The Milky Way (Courtesy of Flickr)


Since the dawn of pre-history, man has looked to the stars for answers.


From our earliest scrawling on cave walls, the silent ether that envelopes our planet has produced fear, wonder and menace amongst our species.


But now, the mystery of the galaxy is slowly unravelling itself as scientists at NASA and the European Space Agency have released a new study calculating the weight of the Milky Way.

According to the study, due for publication  in the Astrophysical Journal, the Milky Way tips the scales at 1.5 trillion solar masses, or 1.5 trillion times the mass of our Sun.


Max Tillman spoke to Professor Geraint Lewis, professor in astrophysics at the University of Sydney, and Professor Fred Watson, Astronomer-At-Large for The Australian Space Agency about how the Galaxy’s weight helps us understand our very creation. And how ‘dark matter’, the unquantifiable glue which binds our galaxy together, could one day change humanities very existence.



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